Weightlifting federation to hold tryouts for SEA Games spots in August

Camille B. Naredo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at May 03 2021 12:25 PM

Weightlifting federation to hold tryouts for SEA Games spots in August 1
Kristel Macrohon delivered a gold medal in the 2019 SEA Games. File photo

MANILA, Philippines -- The country's top weightlifters will battle for their spots in the national team in August, when the Samahang Weightlifting ng Pilipinas holds tryouts to determine who will compete in the 2021 Southeast Asian Games.

Federation president Monico Puentevella said the tryouts will be held after the Olympics, likely in Bacolod.

"Right after the Olympics, siguro sa August, lalaban dito sa Bacolod ang mga bata," he said. 

Puentevella is confident that the Philippine team can improve upon their performance in the 2019 SEA Games at home, where the local lifters won seven medals -- two golds, three silvers, and two bronzes. 

Olympic-bound veteran Hidilyn Diaz won the gold in the 55kg, while Kristel Macrohon also topped the podium in her maiden SEA Games stint after ruling the 71kg class.

Margaret Colonia and Elreen Ando won silvers in the 59kg and 64kg divisions, respectively, while Mary Flor Diaz grabbed a bronze in the 45kg class. John Ceniza won a silver in the men's 55kg, and former Olympian Nestor Colonia added a bronze in the men's 67kg.

"I think sa Vietnam, modesty aside, we will get more gold medals than in Manila," said Puentevella.

The weightlifting chief is brimming with confidence, thanks in large part to the performance of the national team in the recent Asian Weightlifting Championships.

There, Mary Flor Diaz took home three silvers from the 45kg division, and Macrohon added two bronzes from the 76kg division. Elreen Ando had two silvers and a bronze from the 64kg event.

But it was teenager Vanessa Sarno who emerged as the breakout star, winning two gold medals and a silver from the 71kg division.

"I'm sure si Sarno, walang laban 'yan (sa SEA Games)," said Puentevella of the young lifter who has been dubbed as the heir apparent to Hidilyn Diaz. "Sinong lalaban diyan?"

"Si Hidilyn, baka last ni Hidilyn 'yan, I don't know kung may balak mag-pamilya, basta Vietnam, andoon siya. So medalya rin 'yun. Si Ando, medalya rin 'yun. Si Macrohon, bata pa 'yan, 23 years old. Pwede ring mag-gold 'yan," he added.

"I'm just happy that we will produce gold in the SEA Games."

The 2021 SEA Games is set for November 21 to December 2 in Hanoi.

RELATED VIDEO:

Watch more News on iWantTFC